March 31, 2008
by: jovial_cynic

image: obama_cowboy (cc) throwthedamnthing

Agreeing with libertarians on their disdain for the growth of squid-like tentacles of the government, it brings me great pleasure to see more and more libertarians pushing for Obama.

One of the simplest ways to describe libertarian philosophy is that it stands for shrinking government. Bush has obviously been one of the most anti-libertarian presidents this country has seen in that regard. As far as McCain is concerned, he will continue the Bush trend.

That blog also links to a Political Punch article that shows that folks in the US military who are willing to donate to presidential campaigns seem to support anti-war Ron Paul and Barack Obama:

In the 4th quarter of 2007, individuals in the Army, Navy and Air Force made those branches of the armed services the No. 13, No. 18 and No. 21, contributing industries, respectively. War opponent Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, received the most from donors in the military, collecting at least $212,000 from them. Another war opponent, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, was second with about $94,000.

Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, was the top recipient of lobbyist cash. No surprise there.

Interestingly, it's not just the young anti-government/anti-corporate libertarians, either. There's libertarian support coming the heads of corporations, who may feel that the Republican party moved away from civil liberties good fiscal responsibility:

At Freedom Communications, the media company founded by the tenacious libertarian publisher R. C. Hoiles, which is still largely family-owned and freedom-oriented, they had an internal lunch debate on presidential politics the other day. According to Orange County Register columnist Frank Mickadeit, their corporate philosopher Tibor Machan advocated voting for the Libertarian Party. But the company's CEO, Scott Flanders, had a different view:

But there was a hush as Flanders reasoned that Obama is the best candidate to work on four top libertarian reforms: 1) Iraq withdrawal, 2) restoring the separation of church and state; 3) easing off victimless crimes such as drug use; 4) curtailing the Patriot Act.

Even Obama's position on free-trade and capitalism throws off the notion of traditional left-and-right politics, and makes concessions that, in the end, seems to benefit the most people.

Most telling about all of this was the announcement from GOP media strategist Mark McKinnon who pledges to leave the McCain campaign if Obama wins the Democratic nomination:

"Well, this goes back to a memo that I wrote to the campaign when I came aboard more than a year and a half ago, and I simply let them know that I had spent time with Obama and read his book and I like the guy. I think he has strong character and a fascinating life story, and I disagree with him fundamentally on issues like Iraq and trade and a number of others. But I just flashed forward to the improbable scenario, at that time seemingly improbable, that John McCain and Barack Obama might face off against one other. And I just told them at the time that I thought that I would be uncomfortable being on the front lines -- being as aggressive as you need to be in a presidential campaign -- and not only that I would be uncomfortable, but that it would be bad for the campaign, and that if that circumstance were to come to be, that I would just take a step to the sidelines and continue to support John McCain 100 percent and be No. 1 fan and cheerleader. But just kind of take myself out of the front lines."

It's that kind of concession away from traditional party-line thinking that's getting me excited about this coming election.

And it's no wonder Obama is getting support from folks on both sides of the aisle. When you consider the bills he proposed and got passed during his eight-years in the Illinois Senate, it's easy to see that his aim isn't about reinforcing the party line. For example, a ban on personal use of campaign money, a ban on all gifts from lobbyists, a ban on racial profiling by police, a bill requiring police interrogations to be recorded... in spite of his "liberal voting record," these are things I think most people would support.


sam said:
Scott Flanders in no way stands for the foundational beliefs of Freedom Communications OR it's founder R.C Hoiles
April 10, 2008

jovial_cynic said:
Regardless, I don't believe that detracts from my main statement that there is strong libertarian support for Obama, nor from my secondary statement that Obama's campaign does a reasonable job defying the traditional liberal/conservative labeling that tends to polarize voters.
April 10, 2008

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